Examining the Impact of the Net on the Retail Business
Technology has transformed the retail business for small and large companies.
21:46 24 May 2017
Many buyers still prefer to buy goods from large retailers because of the wide variety. However, the internet enables buyers to shop from any online store and have products delivered to their doorstep.
Consequently, all major retailers have an online store with all the products found in their physical stores. Technology has also changed transactions in physical stores and has pushed retailers to completely reimagine how they display retail merchandise. Today, it is possible to walk into a clothing store and shop without interacting with any of the sales personnel or cashiers. You can get virtual assistance and pay for goods online while shopping in a physical store. Other ways that the internet has transformed the retail business are outlined below.
Buyers can now buy items at the lowest prices on the market when shopping online. Some mobile apps like Aisle Buyer enable buyers to compare prices of the same item in different stores. For instance, you can compare the price of the item you intend to buy on all major stores like Amazon, Wal-Mart, and eBay. Chances of being ripped off are low with modern technology and the internet.
The shopping experience in modern stores is different. Since many buyers spend much time online, some sellers prefer to have small retail spaces. They save money on rent charges and spend the savings on promoting their online stores. Robots and virtual dressing rooms are now common in major clothing stores. You can visualize how you will look in a certain outfit in a virtual mirror and make a decision without undressing. Many physical stores now have large touch screens that display their full catalogs. Buyers can view all the items that are available in the stores instead of walking around or asking the sales personnel.
One reason why many people prefer to shop online is to avoid the long queues in physical stores. New payment methods have eliminated the queues. Retailers can now use mobile devices like iPads and iPhones to process debit and credit card payments from buyers. Shopping online gives buyers better and safer options for paying for goods. In addition, retailers can track their sales per hour with mobile cash registers. Some apps like Google Wallet enable buyers to pay for goods and services without cash or needing to stand in line to swipe their cards.
The possibility of making higher sales online than in physical stores has changed the retail business. Major retailers like Wal-Mart and Amazon stock goods from different suppliers. They attract most of their online buyers because buyers can get all items in one store. Other retailers, especially small-scale retailers, are left with no choice but to work with these retailers or lose their online customers. Retailers must engage in consistent and intense marketing campaigns to build a strong online presence and compete with the large retailers.
The internet has changed the retail business for both buyers and sellers. Buyers enjoy an easy, fast, and convenient shopping experience online and offline. The current technology is aimed at making the buyer’s experience even better. Sellers, on the other hand, have to adjust their marketing strategies to compete with large online retailers. Technology and the internet have made the business environment more competitive than before. Retailers have to keep up with the latest technology in their online and physical stores to attract customers.
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